"Mr Dimopoulos also warned about the potential for Australia's oil supplies to diminish in the near future: 'The design of Australia's transport infrastructure is based on the availability of cheap and plentiful fossil fuels. However, Australia's oil self-sufficiency is forecast to decline from 85% to 40% by 2020. Concurrently, national demand for oil is forecast to increase by 50% between 2000 and 2020.
'Without research and planning to support a distribution network for potential alternative fuels, such as hydrogen and electric powered vehicles, our transport system could soon be running on empty,'" he said.
As a result, Mr Dimpopoulos said urban planning, including transport corridors, port/rail/airport access and industrial/residential development must take a new direction. 'Urban planners need to think through the sustainability of further suburban sprawl,' he said."